The Beat Goes On
As I sit here writing the opening to this entry, one of my dearest friends is at her grandmother’s funeral. The past few months, I’ve seen some so many amazing people in my life, lose someone that was very close to them. What I’ve also seen, is how these amazing people dealt with their sorrow, each in different ways. However, the one thing they all had in common was their endurance to move forward. No matter how hard it is, how hard it was or how hard it will be in the future; their courage to face each new day never seizes to amaze me. For that, I’m grateful and proud because they’ve shown and proved to me that no matter what life throws at you, the beat goes on.
Last Monday, the weather was amazing in the city. It was warm and almost humid, of course, it was just a tease for summer but the city took advantage of it. I was having a semi-third date with this guy that I had already been on a dinner date with a few weeks ago. We agreed to meet at this ice cream shop called, 16 Handles, on the Upper West Side at 8.
I arrived on time and he actually ran into a coworker of his and he introduced me. We got our ice cream and took a walk over to the Natural Museum of History. There we sat on a bench, had our ice cream and talked. Or shall I say, he talked about himself and I sat there nodding and listening. He might have asked how my day was and that was about it. I also noticed that I wasn’t even smiling. After we finished our ice cream, I walked him to the corner of where he lived and we kissed goodbye. As I walked home, I told myself that the next time I see him, if all he does is talk about himself again that it will be time for me to move on.
Wednesday. It was marking our third date. The plan was to have dinner and after dinner we’d go back to his place to watch the season finale of one of my favorite shows, The Mindy Project. I will say, the one good thing about this guy was that he always makes the reservations. He decided on going to, The Smith, also on the Upper West Side near his apartment. He was standing outside waiting for me when I arrived.
As we were seated, he immediately went into how busy his day was, how work is just insane for him and then he dropped the bomb of having so much work to do after dinner. He didn’t say anything about me coming over, in fact, at that point I wasn’t sure I even wanted to go home with him. So, I said, “Does this mean, we need to take a rain check on me coming over?” I wasn’t sure if he was expecting me to bring it up but he responded with, “Yes. I just have so much work to do.” I just nodded, smiled and said, “Well, after dinner, I’m going home and watching the Mindy Project.” He understood, we had our meal and as I sat there, again not smiling or laughing; I just couldn’t wait to get home. After we settled the bill, we hugged and kissed goodbye then I walked home. I wasn’t sure if he knew it was the last time he was going to be seeing me but I had already made up my mind.
By the time Friday had rolled around, I was more than ready for the weekend. I just had a feeling that it was going to be filled with nothing but fun experiences. So, when I was standing inside the, Dallas BBQ, in Chelsea waiting for Feathers, his husband and the mother-in-law to arrive; I just knew we were going to have a wonderful time. The rain coming down outside was rather intense but that didn’t stop us from having our drinks and it also didn’t stop them from introducing me to this amazing woman.
She is a friend of Feather’s mother-in-law and she was visiting from Los Angeles. We instantly hit it off and she is a character. The day before, she had just gone through a round of chemotherapy and there she was, sitting across from me having a vodka-soda while giving me a lecture about my own health. I was amazed at what a powerhouse she is and how she wasn’t going to let anything get her down. It was there, after meeting this amazing woman that I thought of how much the beat goes on in our lives. We are often presented with these, excuse me for saying, fucked up situations and how we handle them is what we get back in return. I left the dinner feeling uplifted. I promised her that I would give her a full report on my own health once I found out the results.
After dinner, I was really late to getting to my friend’s apartment. I showed up and then the rest of my friends did as well. There we sat around listening to music, drinking and of course, talking endlessly. Finally, all the booze was gone which also meant that we needed to leave as well. I went home that evening, drunk and happy.
I woke up the next day to grab my coffee and paper and realized how nice it was outside. Not having much time before I needed to get ready. I quickly downed the coffee, glanced over the paper then rushed to the Meat Packing District to meet a friend of mine. My responsibility that afternoon was to help him find an engagement ring for a friend of mine. It was cute seeing him look at the rings and process it all. We went to a few boutiques before he said that wants to do more research on rings before making a commitment but he’s so excited to find the ring. I hugged him goodbye, told him I’m around if he needed me and went home. I took a quick power nap before I needed to get ready for a brand new date!
I met him on OKCupid and we only had exchanged a few emails before it switched over to texting. Our plan was to meet at this Mexican restaurant in Midtown East called, AH! Chihuahua. I’ve never even heard of the restaurant but I got a great deal on the Living Social site. For some reason, my dating instincts told me that this date might actually be an amazing one. I was basing it solely on how we communicated with each other and what he had already shared with me.
What I knew about him was that he is 29, 6’2, from Ohio and works at NYU in their IT department. The good thing is that he lives just around the corner from where we were meeting and he showed up just as I got the last table. From the time he sat down in front of me, we didn’t stop talking. There wasn’t one awkward moment and it occurred to me over our margaritas that I was smiling and laughing. Once the meal was finished, I asked him, “So, do I have you for the rest of the evening or do you have other plans?” He told me that I was all his. I suggested we go to the East Village since we were already on the east side.
We grabbed a cab and went to, Nowhere Bar. I couldn’t believe what a wonderful time I was having. He even expressed that he was having a good time as well. I was hoping that he was going to kiss me soon but after two drinks, he still hadn’t made the move. Once we finished our drinks, I asked him if he wanted to walk over to, Phoenix, since he had never been there before and he said yes. On our walk over to the bar, he held my hand. Right before we were to enter the bar, he stopped mid-walk and kissed me. It was innocent, sweet and I loved every minute of it.
I needed to use the restroom and when I came back, he had already ordered our drinks. While the bartender was making our drinks, he told me how cute I was, how amazing I smelled and kissed me again. The kiss this time was backed by passion and it made my knees weak. We continued to talk, flirt and kiss some more. He confessed to me, “I think I might be drunk.” It was cute and I realized that I didn’t want us to get sloppy and not remember anything. So, we put our drinks down, walked outside for a bit of fresh air. Some bachelorettes were walking by the bar, asked us to take a picture of them; so we did. Then they took a picture of him and me and said how cute we were together. We both didn’t want to go back inside, so we grabbed a cab and dropped him off at his corner. Before he left, he said, “Please text me when you get home and I had a great time.” When I got home, I just sent him a message, “Home.” To which he replied, “I hope you had as good of a time as I did.” I was very honest in my reply and I wrote, “I’m looking forward to date two.” Then I received his final message of the night, “I am as well.” It was one of the best dates I’ve had in a very long time and I’m still looking forward to date two.
I was already mentally preparing myself for a day of entertainment when I woke up yesterday. It was a friend of mine’s 40th birthday. We started out at, The Frying Pan, and everyone was there. The sun was out, it certainly felt like spring and every single person was in excellent spirits. After a few hours there, we then went to this Sunday rooftop party called, Monarch. It was there we all realized it was designed for a much younger crowd. One drink and a few of us left to, The John Dory, where we all sat around, had wine and talked about us retiring in Florida just like the Golden Girls. It is comforting to know that you’ll never be alone, even when we all begin to enter a different chapter in our lives.
Each morning, we are given the wonderful experience to make a difference, to instill happiness, wisdom, patience, compassion, friendship and even love to another human being. These experiences, opportunities and chances are just a sliver of what makes the world go around. It’s so easy to get caught up in work, bills and life in general but one thing we must never do is take the life we are given for granted. Easier said than done but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Life is short, that much we know but while we’re here…let’s make sure that the beat in all of us goes on and on.
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